Book Review: Finding Amelia by Lynsey Howell

finding-amelia
If you’ve ever wondered what happened to Amelia Earhart, then climb aboard the “1927 Travel Air 4000” and take flight with this fun and wildly imaginative book. Written by Lynsey Howell, Finding Amelia gives readers a bird’s eye view into the life of the first female aviator to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean and the mystery surrounding her disappearance.  Not only will readers be captivated the beautiful mosaic of vibrant illustrations found throughout this book, but readers will  appreciate how the author’s personal experience as a pilot influences the vocabulary found within the text.
The book begins by following a young girl by the name of Sara and her side kick, Zulu, as they take their first ever open cockpit, bi-plane ride.  Their plane takes off uneventfully; however, something peculiar happens.  What began as a tour across the ocean later becomes a magical journey through time, where they meet Amelia Earhart and learn that her legacy is a gift that she left behind.
Although fictitious, this story has a lot of educational value and is appropriate for young readers.  Teachers can implement this story as an anticipatory text to generate a discussion about the famous aviator and as an informal assessment to gauge students’ prior knowledge.  As well, a comparative analysis can be done between fiction and nonfiction genres.  Here, teachers can use the text along with a biography to explore author’s purpose, helping students distinguish between the factual evidence surrounding Amelia’s disappearance versus the assumptions.
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